Chicken and leek soup is a Scottish staple, and there are as many variations on the recipe as there are Scots, it seems. Some are thickened with barley, some with rice, and some not at all. I elected to go with a modicum of barley, just to add some body. The result is a light, nourishing soup with lots of flavour.

This comprised the starter course at our Robert Burns Dinner.

Cock a Leekie Soup
Serves 12
This traditional soup from Scotland showcases the leek, a common vegetable grown there, often used in place of onions.
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Ingredients
  1. 12 pitted prunes
  2. 1 oz Scotch plus 2 oz water
  3. 3 lbs chicken legs, thighs attached (about 4 large)
  4. kosher salt
  5. Freshly ground black pepper
  6. 2 oz (4 tbsp) unsalted butter
  7. 2 lbs leeks (about 6 medium), light green and white only, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/2 inch pieces
  8. 10 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
  9. 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  10. 1 bay leaf
  11. 4 cups chicken stock (preferably homemade) plus four cups of water
  12. 1/2 c barley
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, combine the prunes, the Scotch and the water. Set aside to steep.
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat, melt 2 tbsp butter and sauté the chicken on each side until well-browned (about 10 minutes). Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside.
  4. Pour off any fat left in the pan and add the remaining butter. Sauté the leeks over medium-low heat until tender (about 15 minutes).
  5. Tie the parsley, thyme, and bay leaf with a piece of kitchen twine. Return the chicken to the pot along with the herb bundle, stock, water and barley. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cover and cook the soup until the chicken is cooked through and tender (about 45 minutes).
  6. Remove the chicken and set aside to cool. Remove the herb bundle and discard. Skim any fat from the surface of the soup with a spoon or ladle, if needed (see note below).
  7. When cool, remove the chicken meat from the bones and cut into 1-inch chunks. Return the chicken cubes to the soup and adjust the seasonings.
  8. Just before serving, add the prunes and their liquid, simmer for 2 minutes and serve.
Notes
  1. If you have time, it's easiest to make the soup the day before. Chill it overnight and the fat can be easily removed from the top.
Adapted from The Food Network
Adapted from The Food Network
Entertablement http://entertablement.com/
I’m sharing this post with Between Naps on the Porch.

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